Running Relay Gives Back to Communities
July 16, 2012 – The New Balance Reach the Beach Relay has received approval to run through dozens of New Jersey counties on October 12 and 13th along a 200 mile route from Vernon to Seaside Heights. Thirty-six communities along the route will serve as relay transition points and receive donations from Reach the Beach for each volunteer, as well as opportunities to raise money selling food and drink to runners.
The Reach the Beach Relay Series, now in its fourteenth year, has built a reputation for high quality events that benefit participants and local communities. Teams of 6 to 12 runners rotate through 36 transition areas as they cover the approximate 200 mile distance of the race. Runners rotate in a set order covering approximately 16.5 miles over three run segments until the final runner reaches the beach.
Event organizers work closely with town officials on permitting, police detail and EMTs at every relay transition. In addition, Reach the Beach partners with local PTAs, Boys & Girl Scout Troops and church groups who are given donations ranging from $300-$700 for providing volunteers to work with trained captains in each town. Volunteer groups can raise additional funds by selling refreshments to runners who spend time at each relay transition location.
“We have groups that sell homemade baked goods, chicken soup, cider or pre-packaged snacks. It’s completely optional but our runners love it and the community groups seem to enjoy meeting the runners and making money. It’s really a win-win,” Dionne explained.
Dionne said this year he is also offering local running clubs and local businesses the opportunity to have naming rights at race transitions in exchange for registered teams. “If we get a few teams from a local running club or store, we want them to be able to get their name out to our runners. We really want this to be a collaborative event in New Jersey,” he said.
Reach the Beach also offers fundraising team options and is partnering with Back on my Feet for the New Jersey race. Back on my Feet creates self-sufficiency in the lives of those experiencing homelessness by using running as a vehicle. The program’s success is measured by how many members achieve independence through employment and housing.
Community groups interested in volunteering should contact firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information on Reach the Beach or to register a team visit www.NJ.rtbrelay.com.